Immaculata Regional High School Learns About Community Service

Rhonda Sali and her Grade 12 class at Immaculata Regional High School in Kelowna, BC have committed to volunteering at Shoe Bank Canada four times over the fall/winter semester. I went down to the Kelowna warehouse to meet with them in early October to learn a little bit more about them and what service to community means for them.


Please tell us a little bit about yourself and Immaculata Regional High School


Rhonda SaliI'm Rhonda Sali and I'm the religion teacher & coordinator at Immaculata Catholic High School. We're a Catholic school, so we're trying to teach the kids about service. We started with a unit this year on Mother Teresa because she just got named a Catholic saint; the latest modern day saint. We've been learning a lot about modern day saints and how she in particular dedicated her whole life to service. She's such a beautiful role model for us, and also Pope Francis is also such a role model for us in serving the poor. Not only are we trying to learn this theory, but we feel at Immaculata that it's really important for the kids to really get their hands dirty and see what it feels like in your heart to do service as well.


What drew you guys to Shoe Bank Canada specifically?


I have done some missionary work with Jim Belshaw in Haiti before so I have a particular heart for Haiti and this project. I know this is no longer Soles4Souls, but rather Shoe Bank Canada; however, it came from that source. I guess from my personal experience I know what a great organization this is and I know that Jim is so welcoming to young people as well.


What would you say to potential volunteers who might be thinking about volunteering with Shoe Bank Canada? Any words of advice?


That it’s important to put your words into action. You can't know what service is until you put your words into actions. I think Mother Teresa taught us that too when she said, "Love in action is service." I would really say to anyone that it's a life-changing experience to actually get your hands dirty and experience it. It's great.

I pulled a few students aside to ask them about their experience with community service and their thoughts on volunteering with Shoe Bank Canada.



Is this your first experience with volunteering?


I'd say not the first time, but it's kind of new though.

What do you like most about volunteering when you do volunteer?

It feels good because you're helping people.

What's your biggest takeaway so far volunteering with Shoe Bank Canada?

I'd say that I haven't realized how many shoes that are actually pretty good when we throw them away we're not using them, while other parts of the world there that actually lots of people that need them.


Do you have anything that you'd like to say to others who might be considering volunteering?

If you do good things, one day, if you ask for something, then we have more




Is this your first time volunteering?

No, I've volunteered with the SPCA before and I tried the Gospel Mission a few times, and things around my school and stuff like that.

What do you like most about volunteering?

Just being able to help someone who's in a really different position, and when you're working face-to-face with someone, seeing how much it helps them and seeing the smile on their face.

What's your biggest takeaway so far volunteering with Shoe Bank Canada?

Seeing how things we would throw away, other people really need that and they value something that we just throw in the garbage.

Do you have anything that you'd like to say to others who might be considering volunteering?


I'd tell them just to go for it, because the feeling you get when you know you're helping someone else who's in such a hard position is just amazing.

If you'd like to learn more about volunteer opportunities with Shoe Bank Canada please contact Sue at